The setting is the chateau of Verdandi, built on several islands in a rather shalow lake, the structures connected by bridges. It is not a structure intended for defense, it's one for leisure - the corridors are wide, the windows twenty feet tall, lots of luxury suites and the like. There are choke points and places one could withdraw to, but generally, it's about as easy to defend as your average civilian home.
The partisans will try to cut off the escape of the attendants of the party by:
*Burning the boats in the harbor
*Having mages erect a barrier around the chateau - to prevent the guards stationed outside from getting in, and the nobles from fleeing.
Their forces consist of:
*angry citizens: after having their city razed, some fled, and are back for vengeance. Their skills are on par with an average citizen levy... no match for the PCs.
*weres: Kolvir was one of the few places to accept shapeshifters and help them control their affliction. While their power levelsvary, they may be quite difficult to put down.
*ex-military and ex-secret service: not all soldiers fell on the field of battle. They are better trained than the average legionnaire of Lyra, some of them exceptional. The former agents and scouts, though few in numbers, are ideal for this, trained for stealth as they are.
*battle-mages: Kolvir housed an academy for the arcane arts, so the talents of its mages were developed quite well, especially the enchantment and transmutation abilities.
Their leader and the focus of their plan is the wizard Sharmaine, who is conducting a ritual to set the whole place on fire, as well as upholding the barrier. Three of his lieutnants are upholding a shield around him - if they are felled, he can be dispatched.
Each of the three should present an unique challenge.
1st: Lynna: a mortal soul trapped in a demon's body, she was accepted in Kolvir after they saw that there was little malice in her. The fight should take three stages, as she changes with her energies fading.
2nd: a general of Kolvir, along wioth his five siblings. They enhance each other through their presence: to separate them is vital.
1st: Takara of Urborg: imperial quaestor, memeber of the highest imperial law enforcement agency. Highly skilled warrior.
2nd: Estel duCressi: the bride. A half-elf noble, low powered mage, with some demon-derived abilities that are currently disabled (until dawn). Competent with a sword though.
3rd: ? hm. who of the other guys will appear is uncertain.
The PCs will have limited forces at their disposal:
*duCressi guardsmen: elite soldiers, yet few in number.
*the bodyguards of other nobles - very relucytant to leave their charges
*the royal guard - excellent fighters, yet the PCs have to bring the king to safety first, somehow, if they want to call upon their aid.
*Verdandi guards: very decorative, can march in formation and polish armor. Cannon fodder.
As well as that, they can count on the aid of a few NPCs
Daniel von Hirschsteyn: Estel's husband-to-be. Strong. Great character. Not too bright.
Si'Erra KaLea: elf, archer, an almost unbearable character, smart. Sneaky.
Kira Savarin: competent wizard, anger management problem. Friend.
If the barrier falls, the imperial legions will storm the place and make small squishy bits of the rebels.
So, after having dealt with the threat, they may either sqeeze some partisans for info, or follow the lead: a few leaves and a flower from a rare tree. Only one around, at a museaum for foreign cultures. Where the evil Sun Worshippers hide, of course.
There, they will either encounter the prime minister, caught off guard, or her minion, likewise, and can bag them and sqeeze them for info, while the PM will run, and would teleport to safety, if not for the freak storm that hampers magic, so the confrontation may take place in public, like suggested.
If the sun worshippers are 'interrogated' enough, the PCs will learn that the girl they seek and the duchess are held at an Evil Keep (TM).
Through this quest, they will learn how to topple the false sun god.